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an ethnic group and religious sect.

The Samaritans live in Nablus, Jordan, and Holon, Israel. They number about 400. They are descendants of immigrants from Assyria who intermixed with the population of the Kingdom of Israel, which was conquered by Assyria in 722–721 B.C. Of the books of the Bible, the Samaritans recognize only the Pentateuch in a special redaction. Mount Gerizim (near Nablus), where the Samaritans perform sacrifices, is regarded by them as sacred. From the late sixth century B.C., the religio-political conflicts between the Samaritans and the Jews intensified. In 129 B.C. the Hasmonean ruler Hyrcanus I destroyed the temple on Mount Gerizim. In A.D. 36, under Pontius Pilate, the Romans inflicted a bloody massacre on the Samaritans.

The Samaritans have also lived in Egypt, Syria, Rome, Greece, and Iran. The Samaritan writing system is similar to Paleo-Hebraic, and the language itself is similar to West Aramaic. The fourth and 14th centuries were periods in which Samaritan literature flourished.


Vil’sker, L. Samaritianskii iazyk. Moscow, 1974. Montgomery, J. A. The Samaritans [2nd ed.]. New York, 1968.


References in periodicals archive ?
Each year Samaritans receives 17,000 calls on Tyneside alone.
From being the world's first 24-hour telephone helpline the Samaritans receives a contact every six seconds.
Mrs Roberts said: "The Samaritans provide a vital support for the vulnerable and the desperate.
Birmingham Samaritans is marking 50 years of support to the local community," he said, "This is a milestone year which must be recognised as it is a testament to the dedication of all our volunteers and a true reflection of the importance of a service like Samaritans.
Behind the scenes, however, Israel has been giving private promises to the Samaritans that the area will be handed over to them.
Since the majority of Josephan references to the Samaritans occur solely in Antiquities, synoptic comparisons between War and Antiquities are limited to chapters seven and eight.
Established in 1977, The Samaritans of RI remains the state's most trusted name in suicide prevention.
A spokesman for Teesside Samaritans, said: "When young people have been told for years that good exam grades are the ticket to the rest of their life, it is no wonder they feel stressed about their results.
It used to be that people would not ring the Samaritans unless they were considering committing suicide.
Around 1000 new recruits are urgently required if the Samaritans are to maintain their 24-hour service for people in distress.
Salient points are treated in greater detail, for example: early Christian views on Samaritan origin, Samaritan literature, Samaritan theology, Samaritan temple or cult place, location of Gilgal, Gerizim, and Ebal, denial of resurrection, chronological discrepancies, relation to non-Samaritans, Samaritan revolts and persecutions.
The partnership between the local branch of the Samaritans and Securicor, which runs Parc Prison in Bridgend, comes after reports that the suicide rate among young men has doubled in the past 20 years.